NH Watchdog - Lynch Executive Order saves NH millions

Governor issued over 600 waivers to spending freeze over past two years
Lynch Executive Order saves New Hampshire millions

Read the Full Report.

(CONCORD)  New Hampshire taxpayers have saved millions of dollars because of a partial spending freeze ordered by Governor John Lynch, according to the latest study from the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy.  The report, issued today, shows that Lynch approved 24 additional waivers to the General Fund hiring freeze over the past three months, and has granted 632 exemptions in total over the past two years.

"While limited in scope, Governor Lynch’s Executive Order 2008-01 has generated millions in savings from routine hires, purchases, and travel that would have been approved without oversight or disclosure under a different fiscal climate," writes Lead Investigator Grant Bosse, who authored the report.  "The drop in requests for out-of-state travel and the withdrawal of requests for relatively inexpensive office equipment show that requiring permission and disclosure for expenses can provide significant savings to the General Fund."

Lynch instituted a partial freeze in state General Fund hiring, equipment purchases, and out of state travel in February 2008 in order to help decrease the state's budget deficit.  New Hampshire ended Fiscal Year 2009 with an $80 million deficit, but the Bartlett Center reports concludes that without Lynch's Executive Order, the gap would have been even wider.

"Overall, New Hampshire’s spending freeze has resulted in millions in savings at a time when New Hampshire’s budget is facing unprecedented fiscal pressure.  While still small in comparison to the pending budget deficit, the savings from Governor Lynch’s Executive Order 2008-01 have prevented a large problem from being even worse, and have helped department heads throughout state government keep a closer eye on their daily expenses, " Bosse concludes.

Read the complete four-page report from the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy.

The Department of Administrative Services provides its latest report on waivers to the spending freeze to the Legislative Fiscal Committee this morning.  Read that report here.